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How to Sew Homemade Heating Pillows

There are many ways of keeping warm in the winter–bundling up in scarves and mittens, wrapping yourself in a warm afghan or snuglet, and sipping hot coffee or hot chocolate. But my favorite way to keep warm is by heating up a corn or rice pillow in the microwave right before bed. These warm pillows help heat up your bed before you climb in so you get to avoid the terrible feeling of cold sheets. I even use mine while I’m still awake–you can put one over your feet or hands to warm up after being outside in the cold, or you can even balance it on your head to warm up the quickest (I’m not just trying to make you look like a fool–it really works!).

I only have one corn pillow, and I’ve searched everywhere for a second one (I’m greedy when it comes to warmth!) but I can’t seem to find any unscented ones anywhere. Then I realized I could save myself the trouble and the money by making one myself. It turned out to be one of the easiest projects I’ve ever made!

Here’s what you need:

If you know how to make a pillow, then you already know how to make these. But I’ll tell you what I did anyway.

Here’s what to do:

  1. Cut two squares or rectangles (or any shape, really) from your fabric. Make sure the two pieces are the same size.
  2. Line the two pieces of fabric up, one on top of the other, with the right sides facing in.
  3. Sew around three and a half sides, leaving only a small opening.
  4. Clip the corners (read this article on Clipping Corners for more info).
  5. Turn it inside out and push the corners out using your fingers, a pencil, a knife, or whatever you want.
  6. Fill the sack with your filling of choice. It’s up to you how full you want to make it, but I wouldn’t recommend filling it more than 3/4 full.
  7. To close up the opening, fold both sides of the bag in about 1/4 inch and either machine or hand stitch down the entire opening.
  8. To use: place your pillow in the microwave and heat it for a few minutes. Heating time will vary depending on what filling you use and what size your pillow is. A smaller pillow will take less time in the microwave, and filling with more surface area (like rice) will also take less time.

I highly recommend this project! It’s easy enough to use as a beginner sewing project or to teach a child how to sew, and they make really great gifts. It’s also a simple way to save money on your energy bill!